The Additional Learning Needs and Education Tribunal (Wales) Act 2018 will replace the current Special Educational Needs (SEN) framework with a reformed system based on Additional Learning Needs (ALN).
The Act makes provision for universal, statutory Individual Development Plans for all children and young people with ALN. This will bring an end to the current distinction between school led interventions and local authority issued statements and integrate the separate legislative arrangements that exist for pupils in schools and post-16 students in colleges. The Act also seeks to improve collaboration between local authorities and health boards, as well as establishing a fairer and more transparent system with greater emphasis on disagreement avoidance and dispute resolution.
Following consultation with stakeholders, the Welsh Government has decided to adopt a phased approach to implementation, with the new system established by the Act being introduced from September 2020. The current Special Educational Needs system therefore remains in place for all learners with SEN/ALN until September 2020. Only after that point, will learners begin transitioning over to the new system.
This paper summarises the provisions of the Act and its passage through the National Assembly for Wales.
New Publication: Additional Learning Needs and Education Tribunal (Wales) Act 2018 – Act Summary (PDF, 1406KB)
National Assembly for Wales Research Service